Why the OGL changes are a big deal

I intended to be optimistic. For all the chaos surrounding Wizards of the Coast’s attempt to revise the Open Game License, I’m optimistic about the future of tabletop RPGs. I still am, but it has become abundantly clear that, in order to fully describe the situation, it would take more than one article. There’s light at the end of the tunnel, but it’s just going to take a while to get there.

Besides, while those of us who have been following the story might take its importance for granted, to anyone less plugged into the online discourse, it isn’t quite so obvious what the big deal is. It’s a change to the terms of a license, how important could it possibly be?

So, for right now, I’m going to dive deep into what the OGL is, why it’s important, and why the first round of proposed changes caused such a tumult throughout the entire tabletop RPG community. Optimism will have to wait (and there might be an article in the middle about Wizards’ fumbling of multiple responses to the situation), but there WILL be reasons to be optimistic after all this. Promise.

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